To all of you parents out there who are in the thick of letting go, I get it.
It’s long and challenging!
Some of you are sending kids to school for the first time. Some of you are sending them to school for the last time. Some of you are letting go of control. Some of you are watching as they begin to build their separate lives with friends and partners. Some of you are helping them move to new places across town, the state, the country, the world. Some of you are sending them to places for healing. Some of you are having to watch as they make decisions you would not make. Some of you are having to let go of dreams you had for your children and accept what really is.
Whatever you are having to let go of, grief is not far behind, even in the midst of good things. It’s a part of letting go. Sometimes it comes and goes quickly. Other times, it hangs around heavily on the shoulders for weeks as if it intends to stay forever.
It’s that grief that always catches me. I know that letting go and releasing kids to be adults is part of parenting well; I just didn’t know that grief was so intertwined.
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This week in the midst of letting go and feeling the grief creep in, God comforted me as He reminded me of some truths. First, as much as I love my kids and want the best for them, God loves them more and knows absolutely what’s best for them. Second, He’s in charge of their story, their life; not me. My job is to follow God’s leading as I parent and trust Him with their lives.
Sounds good and easy, right? Well, maybe good, but not so easy. I forget. I want to control. I want to know the future. I want difficulties minimized. But that’s not the life God’s called me to.
So when fears, disappointments, concerns, and desire for control rear their ugly heads, I turn to Him. He reminds me again of His love for me and my kids. He reminds me of His sovereignty and His presence. And when the grief comes, as it does, He sweetly comforts me with His Spirit, His Word, and His people.
This parenting thing is hard, but we have a God who understands and offers us grace and compassion as we navigate the letting go. So soak it all in deeply, have a good cry, and face the new season knowing He’s with you.